Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake

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Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Lackawaxen Lake sits just below Clayton Peak, off of Guardsmans Pass. Because this trail is on the other side of Big Cottonwood Canyon, dogs are allowed off leash. In fact, this trail is a perfect summer hike for the pups since there are two lakes for them to swim in, Bloods Lake and Lackawaxen Lake, plus you can turn this route into a loop and bag peak 10,420!

This is a popular trail, especially to Bloods Lake, but beyond that not many people venture up to Lackawaxen. The mosquitoes can be really bad on this trail, so bring bug spray just in case. Lackawaxen Lake makes you feel like you are in high alpine terrain, as you hike through open meadows and then a small boulder field before reaching the lake.


The trail starts from Guardsmans Pass. Use this driving map if you are coming from SLC. The road to Guardsmas Pass is only open during summer months.

Distance: 2.8 miles (loop)
Elevation gain: 920 ft
Time: 1-3 hours
Dog friendly? Yes, off leash
Kid friendly? Yes for ages 10+
Fees/permits? None

Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
The trail starts to the south of the parking lot. You'll see a big white sign that's been extremely faded with "Attention" on it. Follow the trail that goes left, and downhill from that sign. The trail is very well traveled.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
The trail keeps going downhill for 0.5 mile until you reach Bloods Lake.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Charlie takes a swim at Bloods Lake. Some humans like to swim here too.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Walk around Bloods Lake, and when you reach the SE end, hike up in between these two large trees. The trail does two small, short, but steep switchbacks.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Hike up the hill.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
You should be following the electric poles for half of this hike. The trail heads directly West for about 0.5 mile.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Eventually the trail curves south again, and you will be hiking through a pretty, open meadow.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
The trail can get a little mushy, especially if you hike early in the season.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
You'll hike through a small boulder field. You can still see a trail, from all the people that hike over the boulders and have worn the rock down a little. If you feel lost, just aim for the group of trees straight ahead. Lackawaxen Lake is just beyond those trees.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Lackawaxen Lake!
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
On the way back, you have two options. Go the way you hiked in OR at the trail split, head up to the pass just below Clayton Peak. It is fairly steep up to the pass.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Once at the pass, head North (right).
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
After the pass you'll see two trail splits. The first one, stay left. For the second trail split you can either hike up to peak 10,420 (stay right) OR skirt around it (stay left). 
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
Hiking up to Peak 10, 420 ft looking south to Clayton Peak.
Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake
On Peak 10, 420 looking South again.

Lackawaxen Lake Loop trail map

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Hiking to Lackawaxen Lake



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